The winners in the ‘best beaches in the world’ category are in after millions voted for their favourite, and there are a few pleasant surprises!
Coming in at number one is Rabbit Beach in Sicily which is so far off the beaten track that visitors have to take a boat trip out to the small island of Lampedusa. As well as offering stunningly natural surroundings, Rabbit Beach also serves as a loggerhead turtle nesting site and the turtles lay their eggs here. This top beach in Europe is one of the very few sites in the Mediterranean to attract loggerheads.
In second spot, as you’d pretty much expect, is a delightfully exotic Caribbean beach. In the Turks and Caicos Island chain lies the island of Providenciales which is home to Grace Bay. Providenciales is home to Grace Bay; a charming 5 mile long (8km) stretch of powder white sand. Voted number one best beach in 2011, the island is also famous for superb diving facilities with fabulous coral reefs lying close to the coast. Humpback whales can also be spotted just off the coast on their annual migration.
And in third place lies Whitehaven Beach, a pristine picture-perfect 4.3 miles (7km) stretch of pure white beach along Whitsunday Island. Lying in Australia’s Queensland territory, the Whitehaven Beach takes it eco credentials seriously; no dogs or smoking are allowed on the beach.
In the runner up positions were the white sand and coral beach of Baia do Sancho (Sancho Bay) in Brazil and the windswept natural wonder of Rhossili Bay in wales, UK which takes the title of best beach in the UK thanks to its natural wonder.
Top 10 Best Beaches in the World:
1. Rabbit Beach, Sicily, Italy
2. Grace Bay, Providenciales, Turks and Caicos, Caribbean
3. Whitehaven Beach, Whitsunday Island, Australia
4. Baia do Sancho, Fernando de Noronha, Brazil
5. Flamenco Beach (Playa Flamenco), Culebra, Puerto Rico, Caribbean
6. Playa de las Catedrales, Ribadeo, Spain
7. Lopes Mendes Beach, Ilha Grande, Brazil
8. Horseshoe Bay Beach, Southampton Parish, Bermuda, Caribbean
9. Eagle Beach, Oranjestad, Aruba, Caribbean
10. Rhossili Bay, Rhossili, Swansea, Wales, UK